The Southern Kashuby. The land of hills and lakes.
From the lakes and hills to the valleys full of tastes and covered by the green grass. Form the classical sniffing tobacco to the Kashubian strawberry full of the summer sun. From the Kashubian old huts to museums showing the variety of the tradition of the region. The Southern Kashuby, the area from Zukowo to Przechlewo are fascinating with the landscapes and the culture.
The Southern or the Northern Kashuby? If You would ask such question to someone, who loves this region, for sure it would be impossible to answer that. This region is very diverse with the incomparable features and history.
Kashubian Switzerland... so hills and lakes
“Kashubian Switzerland” – this is how w describe the central part of Kashuby. The name is not accidental. This part has the biggest highs differences full of hills and lakes. It is located close to Wiezyca peak (329 m. above the sea level), the highest hill not only in Kashuby and the Northern Poland but in the European Plain. There is also the Kashubian Landscape Park here with beech trees, pines and spruce forests, unique bird species (like the sea ducks “Mergini” or boreal owl) or bats and even the common European viper. Through the Southern Kashuby goes the red tourists trail, very popular among the walkers as well as the cyclists. In the winter time, the area near Wiezyca is a fantastic place for skiing. In the Summer time it is worth climbing the platform on the top of the hill and admire the view.
Wiezyca, Fot: Kaszubski Park Krajobrazowy
Kashubian Switzerland that is not only hilly landscape and post glacier lakes. That is also a culture and tradition, You can find almost everywhere. The names of cities and villages are written in two languages – Kashubian and Polish. You can hear Kashubian language, a mixture of Polish and German almost everywhere. It is difficult to understand what Kashubian people are saying. Luckily, people where are very friendly and kind, sow hen they see you do not understand, they turn into Polish.
The capital of Kashubia?
Which city is the capital of Kashuby region? No one knows and there are debates about it . Usually, it is said that the capital of the whole Kashubian region is Kartuzy, some people say that it is rather Koscierzyna. On the other hand, when we drive into Gdansk, we see the sign: Gdansk, the capital of Kashuby. And how to decide now?
Rynek w Kościerzynie, Fot: UM Kościerzyna
Nevertheless, Kartuzy, situated at the four lakes, is that city which promotes Kashuby the most. Already before the WWII Kartuzy were the centre of Kashubian Switzerland. Tourists were coming here all year long, visiting former Carthusian Abbey and swimming on the lakes. Today there is a Kashubian Museum here with the name of F. Treder, with big collection of the artefact of the historical and folk culture of Kashuby.
Kashuby - cultura and traditions
Near Kartuzy, in the Kashubian Landscape Park, there is Chmielno. A small village, extremely popular among sailors and the lovers of Kashubian pottery. For generations the family of Necel lived here, known around Poland for their passion to pottery. Till today they produce by hand traditional Kashubian vases, tableware, pitchers or bowls with the traditional patterns of tulips, lilies, fish scales or Kashubian star.
Pottery Museum in Chmielno, Fot: Pomorskie.travel
Those decorations are also traditional motives of Kashubian painting on glass and the embroidery. There are several Kashubian embroidery schools, depending on the region.
Travelling deeper in the region, passing Koscierzyna with its renovated Old Town and famous Old Brewery, where the traditional Kashubian beer is brewed, we shall reach Wdzydze Kiszewskie. It is a touristic village, a true heaven for lake lovers and history enthusiasts. Wdzydze Kiszewskie is situated at the Golun Lake, ant the oldest Polish open air museum is situated here – The Kashubian Ethnographic Park. It was established in 1906 and till today is one of the most important historical attraction in Pomerania region and Poland.
Sunset in Wdzydze Kiszewskie, Fot: LOT Serce Kaszub
The Southern Kashuby hypnotize and fascinate. It is love at the first sight and who will fall in love with this area will love it forever.
Museum - the Kashubian Ethnographic Park
In 2006, the museum celebrated its 100th anniversary. The open-air museum is situated on a very attractive area which combines landscape, educational and recreational values. The picturesque old buildings and pens from Kashuby and Kociewie regions are placed on a 22-acre area on the "Kashubian Sea" - a complex of Wdzydzkie lakes. Each of the 50 historic buildings and groups of buildings presents a varied picture of life of rural residents of villages from Pomorskie region from 18th to 20th century. Year-long program of events, with the most famous fair of Wdzydze, is undoubtedly an incentive for every tourist.
Museum in Wdzydze Kiszewskie is annually visited by nearly 70,000 people, of which a large part are children and youth.
With them in mind we have developed an attractive offer of demonstrations, workshops and museum lessons. Museum has a large open space (22 ha) of 50 monuments of folk architecture from Kashuby and Kociewie. With good marking of the route you can visit the Museum yourself, reaching the places where different types of classes are held by an instructor: turning pots, weaving selvedge on looms, making paper flowers, glass painting, embroidery, making folk and stylish Christmas decorations. To conduct workshops the museum provides historic interiors and exhibitions explaining and illustrating some objects, tools and materials with which children can make their own works.
In a genuine 19th century classroom museum offers classes to choose such as writing with quill pen, nib, lessons on how to sing "Kashubian Notes", a lesson on Kashubian language and music workshops using traditional tools and instruments.
During the tour of the Museum we invite you to a free and interactive participation in the work of a blacksmith demonstrations and forestry worker, grinding snuff, washing and mangling, milling rye, which are held in cottages or in workarounds.
The yard of a large farm is devoted to children's fun and games animated by the guardian of the exhibition, he also gives stilts, rolling hoops, bows, slingshots, ropes and wooden colorful, patterned after the traditional toys.
Lessons and workshops last up to 60 minutes - along with a visit one should spend about 3 hours. But one can stay longer if earlier one will plan a meal at the inn or a picnic on the grass.
Kartuzy – the capital of Kashuby?
Boże Narodzenie na Kaszubach
The Teodora and Izydor Gulgowski Kashubian Ethnographic Park in Wdzydze Kiszewskie
Co o Kaszubach turysta wiedzieć powinien
Wielkanoc na Kaszubach
The complex of post-monastery buildings in Zukowo
Collegiate in Kartuzy
Snuff and the art of making snuff horns
Kashubian Switzerland (Szwajcaria Kaszubska)
Kashubian Museum in Kartuzy